Nursing Home Abuse Investigation in Mount Pleasant, SC Completed

nursinghome8An Internal Investigation Into Allegations of Serious Nursing Home Abuse in SC Finalized

After a very serious incident of nursing home abuse was reported to Mt. Pleasant Manor Nursing Facility and Mt. Pleasant police, the nursing facility conducted an internal investigation and will be adding security to their facility.

In December 2012, a grievous complaint against an employee of the Mt. Pleasant Manor Nursing Facility came from the family of Jessie Woods, a 101-year-old resident.

According to reports, Woods began to complain to his granddaughter, Julie Johnston, that one of the staff members was abusing him. However, he was reluctant to give details of the assaults. Later, Johnston noticed that her grandfather’s eye was red, and when she questioned him about it, he said he had been hit and detergent had been poured in his eye.

Johnston then resolved to plant a hidden video camera in her grandfather’s room. The 24 hours of video footage was horrific – according to the family’s attorney Matt Yelverton of Charleston, it was “akin to watching a horror movie.”

The video showed then-certified nursing assistant Deasmond Kimbrough physically, emotionally, and sexually abusing Woods. Kimbrough reached through a curtain once and violently shook Woods’ arm; he kissed Woods on the cheek several times; he flicked Woods’ nose; and he even, at one point, leaned over and yelled in the patient’s ear.

Woods has been bed-ridden for over a year. However, the video showed the patient fighting back as much as he was able – struggling to protect himself with his arms, and throwing items at his abuser, such as a phone and a glass of water.

“He was desperately reaching for any item” to defend himself, Yelverton said. “It was obvious to him he was going to be attacked.”

“I was very angry, very angry. I was stunned because I never imagined that anything of that magnitude could be happening,”  Johnston said.

Johnston immediately showed the footage to the facility and local police, and Kimbrough was arrested. Magistrate Linda Lombard set Kimbrough’s bail at $100,000. The former nurse eventually posted bail and has since been released.

Mt. Pleasant Facility Moves To Prevent Future Nursing Home Abuse

“I’ve seen lots of disturbing things in my career, and I can tell you, this is up there,” family attorney Matt Yelverton said. “But if it wasn’t for the family’s action and the video, this would have gone unreported.”

Officials from the Mt. Pleasant Manor nursing facility reported on February 5th that the facility had undergone and internal investigation, and that they are continuing to work with local law enforcement to prevent incidents of nursing home abuse at their facility in the future.

According to the internal investigation, there were no other incidents involving Kimbrough. However, questions about internal reporting came up after Kimbrough’s arrest, so the facility will also add security cameras to common areas, and administrative officials will make random room checks. The facility will also host quarterly seminars for families to provide information on the complaints process, and to gather information on residents’ overall health. The nursing facility will also conduct private, individual interviews with residents.

Jessie Woods has since been moved to a new facility, with the full cooperation and assistance of Mt. Pleasant Manor.

Report Nursing Home Abuse Immediately with the Help of the Strom Law Firm

If you suspect that you or someone you care for is a victim of nursing home abuse, neglect or exploitation, do not be afraid to act. Estimates state 700,000 to 3.5 million seniors are abused, neglected or are exploited each year. However, most seniors are afraid to report their experiences themselves and, therefore, are not getting out of their abusive situation.

If you have concerns about nursing home abuse, contact the experienced attorneys at the Strom Law Firm today. We offer free, confidential consultations, so you can discuss the facts of your case without worry. Contact us today.  803.252.4800.